Brighton vs Crystal Palace postponed as train strikes force change

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Brighton’s match against Crystal Palace next week has been postponed due to planned industrial action on the rail network. Brighton confirmed the news on their website with rail strikes planned on Saturday 17 September.

Brighton chief executive Paul Barber said: “Both clubs wanted the match to take place on the original date and there has been a continued dialogue in order to achieve this with all relevant authorities, including Sussex and Surrey Police, other local emergency services and agencies, Brighton & Hove City Council, the Premier League and Crystal Palace.

“Following these discussions, and having carefully evaluated all the factors, the unanimous recommendation of the Safety Advisory Group was to postpone the fixture with the full support of the Premier League.

“While we fully appreciate this will be of huge disappointment to both sets of fans, and causes disruption to both teams’ fixture schedules as well as those of supporters, the safety of fans of both clubs, our matchday staff, players and officials must be the priority.

“We have taken into consideration how difficult it would be for fans of both clubs to attend the match without access to the rail network and we looked at a number of options and various contingency plans.

“This included additional travel options or moving the match to earlier or later in the same week, with Sunday afternoon the latest the fixture could be played on that weekend due to the international break, but it simply was not possible to play the match with a full capacity crowd in attendance.

“We apologise for the inconvenience this may have caused fans of both teams, but we feel that the right decision has been reached. We would also like to thank Crystal Palace, the Premier League and the authorities for their support in this matter.”

No new date has been set for the fixture and those with tickets for the game will still retain access. But once a new date has been confirmed, anyone unable to attend who bought tickets for the original date will be given a week to apply for a refund.

Around 40,000 rail workers will walk out next week as the long-running dispute over pay and working conditions continues. The Amex Stadium is best reached by public transport and it was ultimately decided the train strikes would make it difficult for those travelling by rail to get back home.

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